၂၀၁၅ ေရြးေကာက္ပြဲ Irrawaddy.org
ELECTION 2015

The USDP Strongmen Seeking Seats in Historic Poll

A look at the constituencies of major ruling party candidates, which could be among the most hotly contested places during and after next week’s poll.


RANGOON — With less than a week until Burma’s Nov. 8 general election, and just days left to campaign, more than 6,000 candidates are hard at work getting their message across. Among them are a number of figures that are already well-known to the public; the ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP), for its part, has put forth a roster packed with sitting ministers and lawmakers.

Vice presidents, parliamentary speakers, cabinet members and dozens of recently retired senior military officials are among the party’s high-profile picks. USDP acting chairman Htay Oo told The Irrawaddy in August that nearly 60 military officers and some 50 senior members of the government would join the party’s ticket of more than 1,100 candidates.

Many of those candidates have courted controversy in their constituencies over allegations of abuse of power, vote buying and controversial pre-poll donations. Former Burma Navy Commander Adm. Thura Thet Swe and former Rangoon Minister for Border Affairs Col. Tin Win, both recently retired from the military, drew criticism in recent weeks after they visited Rangoon’s remote Coco Island in military vehicles while their opponents—members of the opposition National League for Democracy (NLD)—were temporarily barred, resulting in a one-month advantage for the USDP.

Retired Gen. Hla Htay Win, former Minister of Defense Lt-Gen Wai Lwin, Minister of Agriculture and Irrigation Myint Hlaing and retired director general of the Department of Agriculture Kyaw Win  all made massive donations to their Naypyidaw constituencies in the weeks leading up to the campaign period. All of the men claimed they made the donations—which went toward electrification and health projects—out of goodwill, denying attempts to curry favor.

President’s Office Minister Soe Thane, who is running for a seat in the Upper House representing Karenni State’s Bawlake Township, reportedly threw some US$235,000 of government funds toward building schools, water pipelines and electrical infrastructure in the area since May of this year.

What follows is a list of the names and constituencies of major ruling party candidates, which could turn out to be some of the most hotly contested places to watch during and after next week’s poll.

Name Current Position Constituency Parliament
Nyan Tun Vice-President Zigon, Pegu Division Lower House
Sai Mauk Kham Vice-President Lashio, Shan State Lower House
Shwe Mann Lower House Speaker Phyu, Pegu Division Lower House
Khin Aung Myint Upper House Speaker Mandalay Division

Constituency (8)

Upper House
Htay Oo USDP joint chairman, acting chairman Hinthada, Irrawaddy Division Lower House
Thura Aye Myint USDP Vice-Chair Wetlet, Sagaing Division Lower House
Soe Thane Minister at the Office of the President Karenni State Constituency (9) Upper House
Aung Min Minister at the Office of the President Karenni State Constituency (7) Upper House
Khin Yi Former Minister of Immigration and Population Irrawaddy Division Constituency (6) Upper House
Ohn Myint Minister for Livestock, Fisheries and Rural Development Kyauktan, Rangoon Division Lower House
Myint Hlaing Minister of Agriculture and Irrigation Dekkhinathiri, Naypyidaw Lower House
Kyaw Hsan Minister of Cooperatives Pale, Sagaing Division Lower House
Tin Naing Thein Former Minister at the Office of the President Kalaw, Shan State Lower House
Tint Hsan Minister of Sports Myaungmya, Irrawaddy Division Lower House
Win Myint Minister of Commerce Depayin, Sagaing Division Lower House
Thein Nyunt Minister at the Office of the President Maubin,  Irrawaddy Division Lower House
Khin Maung Soe Minister of Electric Power Hlegu, Rangoon Division Lower House
Myat Myat Ohn Khin Minister of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement Irrawaddy Division Constituency (10) Upper House
Kan Zaw Minister of National Planning and Economic Development Salin, Magwe Division Lower House
Nyan Tun Aung Minister of Transportation and Rail Transportation Natogyi, Mandalay Division Lower House
Maung Myint Minister of

Industry

Mingin, Sagaing Division Lower House
Dr. Than Aung Minister of Health Lanmadaw, Rangoon Division Lower House
Aye Myint Kyu Minister of Culture Yawnghwe, Shan State Lower House
Hla Tun Minister at the Office of the President Kyaukpadaung, Mandalay Division Lower House
Win Shein Minister of Finance Tenasserim Constituency (7) Upper House
Myat Hein Former Minister of Communications and Information Technology Zabuthiri, Naypyidaw Lower House
Than Htay Former Minister of Rail Transportation Myanaung, Irrawaddy Division Lower House
Soe Maung Former Minister of the Office of the President Yesagyo, Magwe Division Lower House
Kyaw Lwin Minister of Construction Wakema, Irrawaddy Division Lower House
Thet Swe Former Burma Navy Chief Admiral Coco Island Lower House
Hla Htay Win Former General Zeyarthiri, Naypyidaw Lower House
Wai Lwin Former Lt-Gen and Defense Minister Pobbathiri, Naypyidaw Lower House
Thaung Aye Former Lt-Gen Pyawbwe, Mandalay Division Lower House
Hla Min Former Lt-Gen Shwegyin, Pegu Division Lower House
Khin Zaw Oo Former Lt-Gen Tenasserim, Tenasserim Division Lower House
Maung Maung Ohn Former Maj-Gen Ann, Arakan State Lower House